Eliminate these 5 bad qualities to lead and motivate your employees

Posted On: 03 May 2016

Lead and motivate your employeesA key part of being a successful business is having engaged, motivated employees. This will translate to more satisfied customers or clients as well, and in turn, a plumper bottom line. 

You might be killing the motivation of your team without even knowing it. If you’re looking to increase your employee retention, and have your team perform more efficiently, watch out for these 5 things your could be doing differently to effectively motivate your employees:

1. Toxic people 

In any office there will be a range of different personalities, and it’s your job as a leader to make sure there are no tensions or issues that lead to diminished productivity. This also includes negative people, who may or may not know that their destructive behaviour can actually bring the whole house down. 

For the people on the receiving end of this negativity though, their toxicity is exhausting and can be a demotivating factor. At the outset, ensure your recruitment process weeds these people out and that you have policies and supervision in place to minimise their damage.

Talk to your people regularly to check of any issues that may be ongoing or any undercurrents that may blow up later.

2. Being a poor communicator

Being able to communicate well does not simply entail talking clearly but also listening well. Not being clear on what needs to be done or when, or changing goal-posts without clearly documenting and sharing them means that employees miss important tasks and become increasingly frustrated.

To motivate your employees to do their best work, you need to focus on hearing your team out and listening to their issues.

3. Lack of reward and appreciation

Its simple: when managers don’t recognise or reward hard work, this makes employees want to do less of it, and can even lead to your team can becoming uninspired and apathetic. 

Simply say thanks for a job well done, surprisingly sometimes this is enough. Additionally, adding in performance related bonuses certainly help motivate your employees.

Even senior executives want to know they’re doing a good job, as their employees might not be telling them. If they’re doing well, simple words of encouragement are easy, inexpensive and motivational methods of encouragement. 

4. Meetings for the sake of meetings

Also known as “a waste of time”. Often, in large organisations processes have been put in place to create efficient work but instead create the opposite. Realising that your meetings are unproductive and taking steps to have less of these meetings, shows people you respect their time.

5. Not always acting with integrity

As a leader, you are on show 24/7. Even on a day off, your behaviour will be judged.

You may have certain behaviours that you exhibit daily, that have become a part of your habitual routine. So much so that you don’t even notice it anymore.

Using your position of power as a manager in a way that shows you don’t fully respect your employees as individuals is a common occurrence, which many managers don’t realise they’re doing. For example not backing your employees up when they're being criticised, assuming the criticism isn't merited, being late for meetings, ignoring suggestions or not replying to emails can all be very demotivating.

Bad leadership, intentional or not, is toxic to the whole organisation. Even the most driven and highest performing employees need good leaders. A key strategy is to develop your managers and leadership team as a matter of priority.


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Topics: Motivation, Employee Engagement, Employee Retention